Psalm 30:11 (NRSV)
11 You have turned my mourning into dancing;
you have taken off my sackcloth
and clothed me with joy,
2 Let us come into his presence with thanksgiving;
let us make a joyful noise to him with songs of praise!
Tonight at our house we are having cake. Cake in celebration, as today I defended my thesis and received an Unconditional Pass.(please see * below) It’s not how I had imagined it. With the COVID restrictions everything changed. And yet, there is still the need to celebrate.
Many celebrations are taking place:
Actor John Krasinski (The Office, Jack Ryan etc.) has created an online show SGN (Some Good News) where he celebrates good news that is happening right now, including hosting a virtual prom to allow students to celebrate, even in isolation. (This might not appeal to all of you, but you can check him out with his special musical guests https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VQLi2GYVULc )
Our Muslim sisters and brothers are presently celebrating Ramadan, their holy days; a time of fasting, prayer and devotion to God.
College and university students are celebrating that exams and semesters are done.
Many are celebrating that Spring has come, as signs of life are emerging and as Creation breathes beauty into our area.
Birthdays and anniversaries and new babies are being celebrated with drive-by parades and window décor.
In the midst of our current reality there is still much to celebrate. Yes. We are in a difficult time in our world and in our lives. And yet, joy can be found in many places.
What can YOU celebrate today?
It might be a momentous occasion, or it might be something only you know – so CELEBRATE. Celebrate with cake or a parade or a “whoop and holler” or by dancing in the streets (or your kitchen!) and making joyful noise before God. Celebrate what you are grateful for or what you hope. Celebrate our essential workers. Celebrate that today is a new day.
It is good to celebrate and give thanks! It is good to turn our mourning into dancing and to be clothed in joy.
I look forward to hearing (or seeing pictures of) your celebrations.
God of hope and new life – help us to come before You with joy as we celebrate the many blessings of this new day. Fill us with a renewed sense of Your presence and lighten our spirits, that we might dance and shout and give thanks. Bless our celebrations and bless all those we celebrate today. Amen.
To Listen (O.k., it’s not a hymn, but I bet you’ll be celebrating by the end!!)
* An Unconditional pass means that I pass without needing any revisions to my work (it’s a good thing!). I could not have done this without the wonderful support and participation of the Trinity community. Thank you for your encouragement and for the sermon-participants who helped bring it all together. I celebrate YOU!!!